Maine residents can sign up to have free smoke alarms installed in their homes this week.

Local Fire Departments across the state are teaming up with the American Red Cross to distribute free smoke alarms to anyone who needs them. The detectors are being distributed through the Red Cross program called 'Sound the Alarm.' Residents can request free smoke alarms through the Red Cross website, by entering their address and other information. 

I became alerted to the program through Orrington Fire because, well, I live in Orrington. And I'm glad they let me know because this is such a valuable resource. Do you know that, many times, you have two minutes to escape a fire? That's so scary, especially if you're sleeping. Having a smoke alarm to alert you to the fire could, literally, be the difference between life and death.

Find out whether your community is distributing the free smoke alarms by logging onto the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign website. Not only with firefighters install the alarms, they'll also check the batteries in your existing alarms, and help you develop an escape plan for your family, so everyone knows they have two ways to get out of any room, in the case of fire.

Thank you to our Maine firefighters for all that you do to keep us safe.